Department of Energy Business (DEB) of Laos functions as a governmental agency, which is organized under the hierarchy of the Ministry of Energy and Mines. The Department is sub-divided into four divisions, each of which is headed by a division chief; those divisions deal with logistics and administration, project development, legal affairs, and project monitoring. DEB is supported by a management team, which consists of one Director General and three Deputies. DEB employs 45 staff members; all are Lao nationals and public servants who work on a permanent basis. DEB also retains international advisor such as lawyers, communication advisors, and engineers, who are foreign nationals and who are assigned works relevant to their services that are given on a time-contract basis.
The main duties of Department of Energy Business are:
• To process investment proposals, and to review technical feasibility study reports, environmental assessment and mitigation plans, and other project documents.
• To conduct financial analysis on project feasibility studies; in justifying resource usage levies, taxes, internal rate of return for equity investors, and debt service coverage ratios for commercial lenders.
• To draft and negotiate project agreements including concession agreements, power purchase agreements, and credit facility agreements, with relevant parties.
• To implement, and to enforce project agreements, to which the Lao government or its subordinate agencies are the parties.
• To monitor compliance of project agreements, and project documents.
• To facilitate the project development process in respect of coordination among stakeholders; including governmental agencies both at the centre and local level, investors, related private parties, NGOs, and neighboring governmental agencies.
• To provide coordination, and consultation on behalf of the Lao government in regard to management, development, marketing, monitoring, and resolving energy problems related to sectoral and local suppliers and consumers in compliance with Electricity Law, Law on Environmental Protection, and other laws being enforced.
• To provide support, and promotion of energy programs as well as other development programs that have connections with energy, investment cooperation of the government, purchase and sales of electricity to overseas partners, aimed at reaching the highest profit level and creation of attractive conditions for foreign investors in the Lao PDR.
• To supervise, and to monitor the implementation of energy development projects in order to ensure their compliance with policies and related project agreements.
• To examine and propose for approval or withdrawal energy investment permits by higher authority in accordance with the provisions of the laws of the Lao PDR or the signed contracts.
• To examine, and to conduct analyses of the market and electricity import policies of the purchasers.
• To meet with peer agencies from the Kingdom of Thailand, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the Kingdom of Cambodia and other countries, in order to secure support, methodologies, and mechanisms for the realization of contract agreements and memoranda of understanding on energy and electricity cooperation.